EXPLORING INCA-ANDEAN PRINCIPLES SUITABLE FOR INTEGRAL OTHERWORLDLY ENCOUNTERS
Giorgio Piacenza Cabrera
To move human cultures forward in an integral way, we may not only need to synthesize new theories or Meta theories but we may use some key ideas found in traditional cultures as they may be suitable to expand our actual interactions with realities that surpass the one revealed by our physical, biological senses. Science, â€˜Ufologyâ€™ and â€˜paranormalâ€™ research are gradually converging to recognize what pre-modern cultures were more adept at interacting with. Nonetheless thereâ€™s great resistance against aspects of the spiritual world without which our knowledge of reality is incomplete. Without overcoming the modern and post modern distaste against things otherworldly, no integral science or philosophy may emerge. In the Quechua language of the Incas (actually called “Runa Simi”) â€œTINâ€ likely refers to the idea of ‘union’ or perhaps ‘unity’. Nonetheless, it is a kind of union that is not static as it allows for interaction, movement, exchange. In fact, it is more of an â€œencounterâ€ in which already existing shared characteristics and the creation of new sui generis characteristics occur. For this to be both fair reciprocity and an exchange among equals needs to take place.
The Quechua word ‘Masi’ refers to ‘equals’ or to entities sharing the same level. It is related with the concept of â€œbrothers.â€ This idea could apply to beings normally sharing the same hierarchical level as parts of that level or as beings becoming of the same hierarchical level when two different hierarchical levels interact. ‘Yanan’ and ‘Yana’ would represent mirror-like opposites as essence and dependence and as â€œwhiteâ€ and â€œdarkâ€ or â€œblackâ€ and these are terms used to refer to a relational parity, key to reciprocity and fair social exchanges in traditional Andean villages. In the Andes, ‘Yanantin’ (or the principle of reciprocity through duality) is more widely known and emphasized as uniquely important and as part of a sense of justice in social life. This concept leads to cooperation and various forms of social cooperative relations such as communal work and the exchange of services. Nonetheless, while â€œYanantinâ€ enhances a balanced, fair exchange of services, â€œMasintinâ€ (as recognized by researcher Calero del Mar) is also important and should ideally lead to a healthy competition and-or stimulating exchanges among equals, even if it is sometimes expressed as low scale, ritual warfare in many indigenous cultures. Interactive experiences should have elements of both and nature shows examples of the latter in healthy competition as when cubs and children naturally play to establish status among them.
Perhaps Andean traditions researcher Javier Lajo (author of Capac Ã‘an: La Escuela de SabidurÃa Andina) would probably emphasize “Yanantin” and parity relations as a unique Andean characteristic surpassing Western and Aryan philosophies which frequently emphasize a principle of â€˜unityâ€™. While â€œtinâ€ seems to represent the meeting or encounter of elements, he would probably propose that ‘in’ (as in “Inca” ruler, “Inti” the solar deity, and â€œTawantinsuyo,â€ (or the union of the four regions or â€œsuyosâ€ of the Inca empire under a fifth, central point in the heart of Cuzco) also refers to the memory of a primordial, Andean, universal deity originally called “In.” I think that, if this deity was really revered as a common primordial God it might have been comparable to the Quechua-Inca concept of â€œWIRACOCHAâ€ the utmost supreme Being/God which could be comparable to that of a supreme, ultimately non-dual, indefinable entity, not unlike mystical understandings of the Jewish/Christian God. â€œWiracochaâ€ was the name given to different revered entities and even an Inca ruler called himself such. Nonetheless spiritually speaking, â€œWiracochaâ€ was also understood as the Supreme Creator and as the very origin of all other deities (including the Sun), and even (as some Spanish chroniclers gathered) as a bearded, civilizing master or teacher that taught and walked in ancient Peru. Nevertheless, considering its highest sense of the word, â€œWiracochaâ€ connects the concepts of â€œfatâ€ or â€œgreaseâ€ (Wira) and of â€œwaterâ€ (Cocha) perhaps alluding to the possibility of reconciling two substances which cannot normally bind. In other words, I think that a deified principle transcending duality may have been conceived under the word â€œWiracocha.â€ Would this be tantamount to an understanding that unity prevails beyond the supreme importance given to duality, complementarity and reciprocal relations in the living experience of the Incas? I think so. I think that besides the very important and emphasized recognition of life as a participatory process requiring the exchange of complementary opposites in a sui generis form of non western dialectical ideology, a transcendental supreme Spirit was ultimately recognized as overcoming the opposites. In this sense, a perennial principle was recognized Inca-Andean style.
I personally think that reciprocity without transcendental unity is empty of itself and that the concepts of ‘Yanantin’ and ‘Masintin’ also complement each other as both principles would also be necessary for understanding the existence of interconnected holarchies. In holarchies or hierarchies, both interdependence between and within levels and equal relations within levels arise. On the other hand, the word “Tinkuy” (used in ceremonies in which three carefully chosen coca leaves are gently pressed together between fingers) refers to an “encounter” which creates a â€˜common spaceâ€™ (or, perhaps, more accurately, a â€˜common timeâ€™) for actual or â€˜presentâ€™ interactions which could be understood as actualizing interactions. In these interactions actual occasions or â€œholonsâ€ are formed. In the concept of â€œTinkuyâ€ three elements are brought together in a proportional confrontation.
I think that these Inca-Andean concepts and practices could be useful for ET contact as it seems to be useful not only for healing, for harmonizing a low tech way of life with the forces of nature, for social binding through shared cultural principles but also for contact with various otherworldly entities. The â€œTinkuyâ€ should include the ‘Yanantin’ reciprocity of complementaries and a relational ‘Masintin’ which could perhaps be understood as the â€˜supplementarity of equalsâ€™. The latter means that, not only a fair exchange but also a certain sense of â€œcommon groundâ€ or equality (no matter how far advanced in some aspects another entity may be) would be required for a constructive, brotherly relation among entities normally existing within the same â€œPachaâ€ (world or time) or within different â€œpachasâ€ (worlds or times). Under higher, unifying principles (given according to Andean understandings by the more spiritual, universal, abstract or cosmic â€œHanan Pachaâ€) we may not be necessary to engage in an excess of competitive ritualized exchanges or warfare but we must at least be able to teach some things as much as to learn some things as equals. We would have to avoid deifying the other worldlers and they would have to be as interested in learning from us as we from them. The point is to create a common space or time. Each of us in this encounter across realms or realm subsets may have to hold our ground up to a point as fundamentally equals without forgetting that our shared hierarchical â€˜Masintinâ€™ level also depends upon more inclusive, guiding principles.
‘TINKUY’ (encounter) is used in ceremonies to relate with the â€œApusâ€ (mountain spirits or deities) and with all other spirits using three well formed coca leaves so that the officiating ‘Runa’ (or Man) co-creates along with the Apus, spirits and forces of nature the â€˜encounterâ€™ having in mind the dark, lower, subconscious, past-oriented, chaotic world and the higher, superconscious, abstract/orderly, future-oriented cosmic world. This encounter space or time is made of a shared experiential intersection + the creation of a new, sui generis experiential space or time, both of which conform to create the encounter in which to interact and actualize possibilities. Beings of different â€œPachasâ€ may then share a common experiential world. They may be said to be aligned in relation with each other as each otherâ€™s past or as each otherâ€™s future. The world of actual experience is called the ‘KAY PACHA’ or “present world” and, although in some sense it may refer to the surface of the Earth (just as the ‘UKU PACHA’ or lower world also refers to the subterranean underworld and ‘HANAN PACHA’ normally refers to the higher, celestial, sky world of more universal, abstract principles), I think that â€œKay Pachaâ€ can also be understood as any world of actual experience, any world in which holons are actualized for conscious beings. According to Andean erudite Javier Lajo (interpreting a pre-Quechua, pre-Inca, â€œPuquinaâ€ language), â€œPacha” basically refers to â€œTimeâ€ and, “Paqa,” refers to â€œEarthâ€ and to â€œSpaceâ€). A “Tinkuy” would be the intersection of a shared time plus the creation of a sui generis, new, time of encounter both of which might be represented by three intersecting circles. â€œRunasâ€ (or men and women) are said to inhabit the middle or in-between world and to be able to officiate the â€œTinkuyâ€.
The three dimensions, worlds or levels of reality of the Andean-Inca worldview seem to have been depicted for at least 5000 years as in the Peruvian ruins of â€œCaralâ€ (the oldest urban center in all of the Americas) they are depicted as three zig sagging â€œstepsâ€. These dimensions, worlds, or levels resemble the three realms recognized in the Indian spiritual path of â€œVedantaâ€ and may refer to actual types of universes dominated by physical, mental and spiritual principles respectively. The process of life (sometimes expressed in the Andes with the Quechua word â€œCausayâ€) may exist in all of them and all of them may be populated by innumerable conscious entities. In a sense, ontologically higher worlds would be closer to the Source may be as the future of lower worlds or give the pattern toward which lower worlds (possessing greater degrees of exterior forms of limitations) may potentially evolve to. While all if these worlds (and their subsets and combinations) may actually exist in their own level, they would only exist in a potential state in relation to each other unless a proportional encounter or â€œTinkuyâ€ is generated to form a shared experiential environment. In this â€œencounterâ€, we would have intersection plus the creation of a new sui generis area giving a â€œpresent timeâ€ in which possibilities are experientially actualized. This would be where (experientially speaking) â€œholonsâ€ (or part-wholes according to Ken Wilberâ€™s â€œIntegral Theoryâ€) become actual â€œoccasionsâ€ (in the sense given by philosopher A.N. Whitehead).
I think that, in order to have harmonious encounters with extraterrestrials and-or encounters with discarnate beings from the Subtle Realm, it would behoove us to learn â€˜Yanantinâ€™ parity and reciprocity and â€˜Masintinâ€™ relational equality and thus co-create the â€˜Tinkuyâ€™ that unifies physical human and other worlds in a shared intersection that also originates an interesting, creatively unique encounter in ‘presentâ€™ or experiential, actualizing time. Three intersecting circles may be more appropriate to visualize this. I think that, up to a point, every interactive encounter by force already has some degree of â€˜Tinkuyâ€™ but that, nevertheless, the intensity and harmony within it can improve. We must come to understand the principles of natural, harmonious interactions among the three worlds (the three â€œPachas,â€ the three realms in order to live accordingly when trying to extend human experience beyond the physical level of reality which we normally understand. This will also be necessary when science advances ways to interact with other universes which, if ancient traditions are correct, will also be arranged under the three main hierarchical levels, â€œpachasâ€ or realms. This could be the beginning of an awakening beyond the confines of the physical universe comparable in importance to previous major scientific discoveries which modified our sense of place in existence.
There may be many more technologically advanced beings as well as beings from different alternative realities capable of learning from us. Healthy, productive interaction will take place when we meet as equals under fair reciprocal exchanges. In a sense, as humans of the â€˜middle worldâ€™ we would be able to officiate in order to co-create the union of â€œTinkuyâ€ between a lower, subconscious, past- dependent Pacha with a higher, superconscious, future-dependent Pacha. This â€œTinkuyâ€’ (the intersection plus the creation of a new â€˜timeâ€™ of encounter) would be in the experiential present and, once created, would â€“perhaps- be lasting as the word â€˜Tinâ€™ can also signify a â€œlastingâ€ encounter. What is required to â€˜officiateâ€™ as a â€œshamanâ€ bridging the worlds of experience is humbleness, surrender acceptance (through sentiment) of a greater divine guidance and Source and respect. In this way we donâ€™t force things to happen. This would be the way of the â€œAlto Misayocâ€ (more developed shamans capable of conversing with the highest spirits of Hanan Pacha). We would humbly recognize what is and invoke. We would align ourselves in service to all beings and with what naturally comes by accepting all worldly or otherworldly manifestations with naturalness, simplicity and respect. Then the â€˜Chakanaâ€™ or bridge connecting the realities would adequately form and be stabilized by exchanging services with just reciprocity and with (hopefully growing) healthy degrees of equal learning and teaching.
The following are good sources of information that may complement each other. The first is perhaps more literary in scope and the second is perhaps more politically inclined.
Edmer Calero del Mar on “Masintin”
Javier Lajo on â€œParity,â€ â€œYanantin,â€ â€œTinkuyâ€
Ken Wilber (1995) â€œSex, Ecology, Spirituality: The Spirit of Evolution.â€ Boston: Shambhala.